I met Princess Nky (she is a proper Princess o) at the Excuse Us London event in April (or March, fuzzy on dates now). It had been a very successful event, and we all piled into a restaurant for dinner. Everyone got talking and when I heard her surname, I introduced myself and asked if she was from the royal family in my town (I’m from a town, not a village). Of course she was/is, she’s a princess!

And a really lovely one too, I remember her encouraging me just before I went on stage to moderate a panel at Social Media Week London, Princess you don’t know what that short chat did for me that day! Thank you! 

She’s up on a Saturday for a reason, so you can head into the kitchen and whip something up inspired by the photos below! I’m grateful I have royalty on the blog this 21st day of the #31days31writers project; I give you Princess Nky!

My name is Nky Iweka, British-Nigerian or is it Nigerian-British (I wouldn’t want to offend either side of my family and nationality). I live and breathe food, a foodie if you’re being charitable or a glutton if you’re not.

2013 was the year I truly discovered that I could combine my passion for food with my creative side and make a living from it in various ways.

One of the things I have always wanted to do is bring Nigerian food to the forefront of international cuisine. Our food is tasty but not always pretty. 2013 was spent refining the preparation and presentation of our food; writing a 300-page Nigerian cookbook due to be published next year (preview here: http://issuu.com/tupelogreen/docs/prelims_staplesreduced) and setting up an Executive Culinary Services Company (Tupelo & Green).

Like most people, I am grateful for my friends and family. As a Social Media Enthusiast, I also grateful to my friends on Facebook whom have given me great feedback on my food, much as they complain that I make them hungry with my posts.

My highlight of the year was having the opportunity to train the Executive Catering Staff of a major Nigerian organisation for several weeks over the summer.

You’re probably wondering what is so special about my food? As well as finding new ways to present Nigerian food and discovering our more unusual dishes, I spend a lot of time seeking inspiration from other cuisines. “Nigerian food with a twist”, my older daughter calls it.

They say a picture tells a thousand words, so here are a few of the dishes I made in 2013:

An Igbo favourite, Abacha na Ugba aka African Salad, brought up to date in a modern stack – all the traditional elements remain: stockfish, utazi, garden eggs, onions etc and some roasted red peppers for additional colour.

An Igbo favourite, Abacha na Ugba aka African Salad, brought up to date in a modern stack – all the traditional elements remain: stockfish, utazi, garden eggs, onions etc and some roasted red peppers for additional colour.

Nigerian/Asian Fusion - Prawn & Ugba Noodle Stir-fry: Inspired by the Nigerian love for instant noodles and Asian stinky beans. The latter are from the same family as ugba.

Nigerian/Asian Fusion – Prawn & Ugba Noodle Stir-fry: Inspired by the Nigerian love for instant noodles and Asian stinky beans. The latter are from the same family as ugba.

Spicy smoky Native Jollof Rice (Inuk Edesi) made with palm oil and smoked fish is an absolute favourite of mine.   This particular plate was demonstrated to my students in Lagos earlier on this year: served on a bed of smoked fish, goat meat and ugu salad.

Spicy smoky Native Jollof Rice (Inuk Edesi) made with palm oil and smoked fish is an absolute favourite of mine.
This particular plate was demonstrated to my students in Lagos earlier on this year: served on a bed of smoked fish, goat meat and ugu salad.

If I could do one thing differently, it would be that I wish I had listened to a friend who said a couple of years ago: “Nky, the thing you would do for free is the thing you should do for a living” – I would have started my reinvention earlier.

So here’s to a fabulous 2014 for all of you.

Nky Iweka lives in London and may be found on here: http://tupelogreen.com or here: https://www.facebook.com/TupeloGreen

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Comments
  1. Meg Amechi says:

    I love the pictures of the food! I could eat it right now! Well done
    Nky you have had a fabulous 2013, I pray 2014 will be your best yet!

    Like

  2. Labi oguns says:

    As an avid Nky fan and someone who has been privileged to taste her cooking, I want to say Nky is fabulous and I wish her greater success in the coming year! I’ve been literally pushing her, get that book published girl!

    Like

  3. […] “I live and breathe food” – Nky Iweka #31days31writers […]

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